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Monsanto Fights California’s Classification of Glyphosate as a Carcinogen
In September, a California state agency added glyphosate, the main ingredient in RoundUp weed killer, to its list of known carcinogens. Monsanto, which manufactures RoundUp, is fighting back by filing a lawsuit to prevent that classification from occurring.
RoundUp Faces Intense Scrutiny
RoundUp weed killer has been a wildly popular herbicide since Monsanto introduced it in 1974. However, the product has come under intense scrutiny after the World Health Organization classified glyphosate as a “probable human carcinogen.” California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment soon followed suit. Now, according to Reuters, Monsanto is suing not only the agency but also its acting director in state court.
According to California law, all chemicals believed to cause cancer must be put on a list so that citizens are informed regarding their risks. The state agency announced in September it would add glyphosate to the list after the World Health Organization’s classification.
Monsanto is disputing that assessment, citing decades of studies that say glyphosate is not a cancer risk. In the lawsuit, the company argues the California agency’s listing of glyphosate as a carcinogen based on the World Health Organization report is ceding authority to an “unelected, undemocratic, unaccountable and foreign body.” In addition, Monsanto argues that the company’s right to due process was violated.
Tell That to the Victims
While Monsanto will work feverishly to deny glyphosate is a carcinogen, several people across the country believe the opposite just as vehemently. Farm workers and others living in areas where RoundUp is heavily used are filing lawsuits against Monsanto, claiming exposure to the herbicide resulted in their being diagnosed with a form of cancer known as Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.